AFP / PAUL CROCK
Germany’s Alexander Zverev heads into the world’s first Grand Slam ranked fourth in the world
Giant German Alexander Zverev has been widely tipped for greatness but has gone far beyond a Grand Slam fourth round – something he plans to fix at the Australian Open. The 20-year-old heads into the year’s first Grand Slam ranked fourth in the world, shorty of five titles last year.
His progress has marked him out as the most likely of the current crop of youngsters to translate his talent into major titles. While he made the fourth round at Wimbledon last year, he is yet to push on further. “I think improving the Grand Slam performances,” he said at the Melbourne Park when asked what was his key goal for the year. “I mean, the furthest I’ve gotten to the fourth round of Wimbledon A lot of times not because I played bad, but because I played very good opponents. “I lost to (Rafael) Nadal here, I lost to (Milos) Raonic in Wimbledon” Every day in five sets. Zverev was one of just four men to beat his idol Roger Federer in 2017 when he defeated him in the final Montreal. The Swiss has a great deal in the world and is in the middle of the year. “I’ve shown you multiple times over the years that I can play and beat the best guys in the world,” he said. “I’m always trying to sound cocky or anything, but I’ve always said that I’m always working hard, I’m always trying to improve performance at the Grand Slams. “Hopefully I can do this week.” Grand Slam men ‘s singles champion in a decade – a record currently held by Novak Djokovic who was 20 years and 250 days ago when he won the Australian Open in 2008. Zverev was knocked out in the third round here last year and opened his 2018 campaign Against the backdrop of Thomas Fabbiano with a potential third-round clash against his older brother Mischa awaiting him. “Hopefully we can get there.” “It will be an interesting day,” said Zverev.
AFP / PAUL CROCK